The longer the lamb marinates in the seasoning paste, the better flavor you'll have. Anywhere from 1 to 24 hours will work, but overnight is best. Slice the leftovers for pita stuffed sandwiches topped with tabbouleh.From the book "Mad Hungry," by Lucinda Scala Quinn (Artisan Books).

Mad Hungry, October 2010, Mad Hungry


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Recipe Summary



Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Place the chopped lemon, rosemary, garlic, salt, pepper, and olive oil in a food processor. A blender can also be used, if done in batches. If you have neither, finely chop all ingredients together.

  • Open up the lamb and lay it flat. Spread and massage the lemon paste evenly over the inside and outside of the lamb. Place in a baking dish and cover, or in a large resealable plastic bag. Refrigerate overnight to marinate, turning occasionally.

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Remove the meat from the refrigerator 30 to 60 minutes before cooking. Place the lamb on a rack in a foil-lined roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet. Place the meat in the oven and after 5 minutes, reduce the temperature to 425 degrees. Roast for 45 minutes, or until medium rare, 140 degrees on an instant read thermometer. Allow the meat to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before carving and serving.


Reviews (6)

73 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 23
  • 4 star values: 28
  • 3 star values: 13
  • 2 star values: 7
  • 1 star values: 2
Rating: 5 stars
We have only made lamb before with garlic and rosemary, and never butterflied, so this was a bit uncomfortable for me to try! It was absolutely delicious and we will have to make it again sometime. We followed the recipe as is, using the larger amount of olive oil. The marinade is a paste. This is well worth trying.
Rating: Unrated
Use the whole lemons, chunk them up and seed them. This is the best lamb recipe I have ever tasted. I do use more garlic and rosemary that the recipe calls for though.
Rating: 5 stars
I was skeptical of using the entire lemon to make the paste marinade, but it turned out really well. It gave the lamb tons of flavor. Now if I had to review how well I deboned the lamb, that would be another story...
Rating: Unrated
I made the Roast Leg of Lamb with Garlic, Rosemarry,Thyme, and Lemon PEEL...,not the pithe as in the recipe, Lemon, and Salt and Pepper. I Marrinated it for 2 Days instead of the recomended one day. I got busy. Anyway, turnes out that it was the BEST LAMB I have EVER HAD!!! I would Strongly recomend this recipe to anybody ...even if its your first time making it. Use a Meat Thermomiter for sure!! This Lamb will prove to impress anybody you are Roasting it for. SMILES
Rating: Unrated
I DEBONED my own Lamb of Leg...the first one I have ever done mind you. It was pretty exciting to do. Then I made the lemon paste, and it was heavenly to smell, and I even got me a spoonfull of it and tasted it. Te paste was SO YUMMY. I smotherd my 5 pounds of Lamb, both sides, then placed it into a container with the lid on, into the fridge. I will be waiting the FULL 24 hours before roasting it. I cant wait, and I WILL let ya knnow how it turns out. So far, It is a wonderfull recipe!!
Rating: 5 stars
Making this for the third time for a Greek-inspired dinner party this weekend. It's so easy and tastes delicious. My family loves it. My friends love it. I love it!